Transforming a Home with Trim

Ever walked into an open house or other upscale domicile and notice the wood trim? Remember how expensive the crown molding and baseboards looked and the classiness it added to every room? Believe it or not trim can be done on a budget. The key to making trim look expensive and professionally installed is in the cuts.

First off, the trim that is installed at the ceiling line is called crown molding. It can be simple or a combination of several different trims layered together to make a very ornate crown. Dentil, Leaf, Piedmont, and Valeriano are just four of the dozens of trim options to choose from. Adding crown molding to your home adds beauty, but more importantly value. But be careful not to overspend on materials. The more ornate the crown, the more expensive it is. In addition, be mindful of the ceiling heights. The taller the ceiling the taller the crown molding a room can take. For an eight-foot ceiling, keep the crown shallower and less detailed. Chose a crown molding that will go with the style of the home and your own personal design style. Very ornate moldings are more at home with traditional d├ęcor. If you are thinking of installing crown molding as a DIY project, remember that the corners and how well they are cut will determine the beauty of the trim. In corners the ends have to be cut at 45-degree angles. Drywall is never plumb so getting the corners lined up perfectly is a hard thing to do. If cutting the corners scares you, consider using corner blocks. Install the corners first and then the molding only needs to be cut straight.

Unlike crown molding which is an upgrade, baseboards are a standard room trim and finishes the bottom of a wall and the edge of the floor. Standard or basic baseboards are between three- and six-inches tall, but as with crown molding, base molding is limited only by your design style and budget.

Windows are framed with casing around the sides and top of the windows. The bottom of the window is actually called a sill and supporting it is the apron. Windows are like the eyes in a room so frame them up with trim. Install drapery rods above the casing to add more drama to the window. Door trim is also called casing and looks good when it matches the window trim. Increase the drama of windows and doors by using rosettes or other corners that simplify the installation like crown molding corner blocks and adds a decorative element.

Protect walls with wainscoting. Installed on the lower third or lower half of walls, wainscoting is a traditional design element that adds texture and acts as a barrier to furniture pieces that can strike and damage drywall. Painted white or stained to reveal the natural wood grain wainscoting is a trim treatment that is as popular today as it was in the past. A popular style of wainscoting is bead board which also serves as a stylish backsplash alternative in kitchens and baths.

Give your artwork even more focus by adding molding to the wall resembling a picture frame. Simple molding is applied to a wall in a square or rectangular and looks good painted or stained. Increase the focus by painting the wall inside the trim a contrasting color from the walls for bring out a color of the art you planning to install. Even without a piece of art, the addition of wall molding frames is an easy way to highlight a room.

Explore the trim options in your home. It is a finishing touch and one that is a good return on investment.

Eugenia Orr
Castino Painting and Home Services